Sunday, July 31, 2011

Sunday Morning Knit Wit ~ Summertime Knitting

I found a new favorite place to knit this summer.  I seem to have migrated to my back yard under our old apple tree.  It is so cool in the shade and I am enjoying the sounds of summer as I knit away!  The birds are chirping, the crickets are cricketing, bees are humming and sometimes, if I listen very very carefully, I can almost hear my garden grow.

Sitting in the shade with a cool breeze and a tall cold drink knitting a small project is my idea of summertime bliss.   I wouldn't suggest working on an afghan or blanket this time of year.  But working on a pair of socks, lacy scarf or pair of mittens are the perfect summertime project.  I'm usually don't use aluminum needles, but I tend to switch to aluminum when the temps go up.  I may be imagining it, but they seem to be alot cooler as well.

Here are a few of my current projects, all very good summertime projects :

Lavender lacy shawl:

Knit Vases for a baby shower:

And a pair of 2 at a time toe up socks:

And a side note on the socks - this is my very first pair of toe up and working 2 at a time.  I'm not sure if I really like this method yet or not.  I seem to be struggling with smooth edges, which I hope will be resolved after blocking.  But, I may just go back to the tried and true method working one at at time on double pointed needles cuff down.  We will see!

What is on your needles this week and what are your ways to keep cool during the summer while knitting?

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Sunday Morning Knit Wit ~ A perfect match (Socks and Housework)

I knit socks the 'old fashioned' way - one at a time on double pointed needles.  And I have Second Sock Syndrome...  The first sock flies as I can't wait to see how it comes out.  But the second one goes much slower.  The excitement is gone.  Sometimes the second sock will can take 4 to 5 times as long to finish as the first one.

But yesterday, I challenged myself to finish the second sock for one of my daughters and get my house work done. So I broke it down by sock part and here is how it evolved:

I got up bright and early and set myself up in a comfortable chair in the shade under the apple tree.

Cast on and completed the ribbing -  then watered the garden (not a tough chore, but a chore nontheless)
Worked half the leg - came inside and started a load of laundry and cleaned 1 bathroom
Worked 2nd half of the leg - came inside and cleaned the refridgerator (oh boy, did that fridge need cleaning!)
Worked heel flap and decreased for heel - came inside and made mac salad (I had to put something in that nice clean fridge!) and did another load of laundry
Worked gusset - came inside and cleaned second bathroom
Worked half the foot - came inside and vacuumed and did another load of laundry
Worked 2nd half of the foot - finished up the laundry
By 4 PM I had finished the toe and my house work! 

It actually worked out very well and I think I actually finished the second sock faster than the first one!

Now, last week I took advantage of KnitPick's 40% off sale on their books and bought "Toe-Up 2-at a Time Socks " by Melissa Morgan Oakes.

I am hoping that this method will cure me of the Second Sock Syndrome.  Early this morning I cast on the toes for another pair of socks for another daughter.  It took some time to adjust to different methods as I am a creature of habit, but so far so good.  I have the toes completed and now I am off to weed the garden.  I am hoping to finish the foot ahd after that I will mow the lawn. 

I hope to have this pair done by next week and will let you know how they come out.

Do you have Second Sock Syndrome?  If so, tell me about how you challenge yourself to 'get them done'.

Until next week  - Happy Knitting!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Sunday Morning Knit Wit ~ Vacation Knitting

Summer is here and keeping us especially busy!  Lawn care, gardening, going for ice cream and vacations can keep us on the go, leaving little time to knit.

But summer is one of my favorite times to knit and I try to find every opportunity to get my sticks out when ever I can.  Nothing beats sitting on the porch with a tall cool drink in the evening working on a project.

This past week, Daryl and I were on vacation and we drove up the coast of Maine, stopping at flea markets and beaches along the way.  The trip to Acadia National Park was amazing and I recommend making the trip if you can.  It is a good thing that D does all the driving because I knit up this pair of socks while in the car. One of my daughters will get these for Christmas (but I can't tell you which one right now... just incase they actually do read my blog!)

This shawl was done partly on the porch and partly in the car driving to Vermont to pick up our grandson. 
Go to my etsy shop to see more pictures of this handknit shawl.

And I was able to finish my spinning project -  1,658 yards of heavenly merino/silk blend. My friend, April and I are each going to make a shawl with this fabulous fiber that we are calling Fairy Dust.  I'm still looking for a pattern, so if you have any suggestions, please let me know.  I was thinking of incorporating some type of bead work with this project as well.

So, don't let summer shove your knitting and spinning projects aside... it's not just for winter.  What's on your needles?  I would love to hear from you. I have another shawl with some surprising color work on mine and hope to have it ready by next week.

Enjoy your summer!